Okagbare fails in 100m as Nigerian trio race against time in 400m women

US athlete Tori Bowie (R) leads Nigeria’s Blessing Okagbare during the semi-finals of the women’s 100m athletics event at the 2017 IAAF World Championships at the London Stadium in London on August 6, 2017. Jewel SAMAD / AFP

Nigeria’s hope of getting an individual medal in the 100 metres women died on the tracks of the Olympic Stadium, London, as the country’s entrant in the race, Blessing Okagbare could not make the final of the event held yesterday.

Okagbare came fourth in Heat Three with an 11.8 seconds finish that saw her behind U.S’s Torie Bowie (10.91 seconds, Cote d’Ivoire’s Murielle Ahoure (10.99 seconds) and Trinidad and Tobago’s Michelle-Lee Ahye, who came third on a time of 11.04 seconds.

Although Okagbare could not make yesterday’s final of the event, she is still expected to try her luck in the 4x100m relay and the long jump, which begins on Wednesday.

At the last Championships in Moscow, she won a silver medal in the long jump and members of the Nigerian team expect a repeat performance in London.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s Patience Okon George, Yinka Ajayi and Margaret Bamgbose will be in action in the 400 metres women race, where they need to beat their personal best times and possibly run inside 50 seconds if they desired to qualify for tomorrow’s final of the event.

George came second in Heat Five behind USA’s Quanera Hayes in 51.83 seconds while the duo of Ajayi and Bamgbose came third in their respective heats.

Ajayi, making her debut at the championships, ran 51.58 seconds in a heat that had the reigning Olympic champion, Bahamas’ Shaunae Miller-Uibo (50.97) and Jamaica’s Stephenie Ann Mcpherson (51.27), who came first and second respectively.

Bamgbose, a semifinalist at the Olympics in Rio last year, was also third in Heat Six to book a place in today’s semifinal.

George is in the first of the three semifinals against the duo of Miller-Uibo and Hayes, Ajayi will run in lane eight of the second semifinal, where she is drawn against defending champion, U.S’s Allyson Felix, the Jamaican duo of Shericka Jackson and ageless Novlene Williams-Mills as well as 2015 9th IAAF World Youth Championships winner, Salwa Eid Naser of Bahrain.

Bamgbose will run against US’s Phyllis Francis, the only athlete in her heat that has ran inside 50 seconds (49.96 seconds) this season, home girl, Zoey Clark, as well as the African duo of Kabange Mupopo of Zambia and former world champion, Amantle Monthso of Botswana.

Nigeria’s quartermile barrier runner, Glory Onome Nathaniel and triple jumper, Tosin Oke will also be in action today.

Nathaniel will run from lane three in heat five of the opening round, just as Oke, a finalist at the last edition of the championships in Beijing two years ago, has been drawn in the second of the two qualifying groups.

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